[linux-elitists] HTML in e-mail

Joakim Ziegler joakim@avmaria.com
Fri Aug 22 14:49:59 PDT 2003

On Fri, 2003-08-22 at 12:35, Jeff Kinz wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 22, 2003 at 12:07:51PM -0500, Joakim Ziegler wrote:
> > On Fri, 2003-08-22 at 07:48, Jeff Kinz wrote:
> > > As a result these folks now pay 400% of what they would have paid
> > > to download the same mail as non-html email.  (300% more than 100%).
> > 
> > > That doesn't seem trivial. And its clearly wasteful.  I would certainly
> > > object to paying extra that wasn't neccessary.

> > Well, as I said several times, most people don't get 100 mails per day.
> > People like us (hackers, mailing list village idiots, etc.) do, but
> > we're in a very small minority, and we tend to have much more bandwidth
> > anyway.

> Except that regular users are getting copies of movie trailers and other
> enormous attachments so they get much more data emailed than "People Like us".
> I can use my own family as proof of that.

...which makes the "HTML mail is wasteful" argument totally moot, since
attachments have nothing to do with HTML mail, and make the size
difference between plain text mail and HTML mail disappear totally in
the noise.

> > And it's not like the price is high. I'm from Norway, which does use
> > per-time metering for phone calls. I believe the cost right now is
> > equivalent to about 5 cents per minute during the day, and about half
> > that at night. Do the maths.

> Please do - and add up the total for everyone it affects.  Just because
> the cost is spread out over millions of subscribers does not mean it is
> negligible.  On an annual basis its probably higher than the GDP for
> some countries. (small, poor, countries admittedly, but still... :-)

Please explain to me why this "total cost for all users put together"
matters, and to who. 

> I believe the cost is higher in the UK and Germany?

It may be. I'm not familiar with the rates in those countries.

> Also - Its only a matter of time before most ISP's abandon flat rate
> pricing structures and begin charging directly for BOTH connect time and
> data transferred ala - the phone company voice connection model.

> Why?  As both the data transfer speed and the data transfer rate
> increase the ISP's will be forced to adapt to a more dynamic billing
> response since some small percentage of their user's will be consuming
> most of the capacity of the their networks. 

> Example - Here in the US, the largest cable provider shuts off the
> internet access of flat-rate who transfer more data than a certain
> amount, (AND they don't publish what the limit is!) Company is 
> ComCast, who recently took over AT&T's cable operations.

This may be true. Again, the overhead represented by HTML formatted mail
versus plain text mail is so small that it won't matter. ComCast
provides high-speed cable internet access. That means they expect people
to do all the sanctioned things, like watch movie trailers from the
entertainment industry, etc. The HTML overhead in email becomes
laughably irrelevant in comparison to this.

   The Private Joakim Ziegler - Not Speaking For Anyone But Myself
    joakim@avmaria.com - http://www.avmaria.com - rdgzt@Undernet
            http://www.avmaria.com/ - http://www.fix.no/

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